• DREAM Act could generate billions for U.S. economy

    A new study estimates that passing the DREAM Act would contribute $329 billion to the U.S. economy by 2030, or $18 billion a year; under the act, illegal immigrants would be able to go to school, work legally, obtain professional licenses, and enjoy other benefits, which will see them earn more, pay more in taxes, and consume more goods and services

  • Administrations temporarily waives some immigration measures in wake of Hurricane Sandy

    The Obama administration has waived immigration laws for illegal immigrants now in the United States, saying that the immigrants’ ability to maintain their lawful status or collect benefits has been effected by Hurricane Sandy; this measure will provide relief for immigrants, but some people are not happy with it

  • Obama, Romney differ on major homeland security issues

    Tomorrow, Tuesday 6 November, American voters will choose between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney as the next president of the United States; the state of the U.S. economy and the best ways to reduce unemployment and increase the pace of economic growth were at the center of the campaign, leaving little room for other issues. Homeland security issues, in particular, played little, if any, role in the campaign or in the three debates between the presidential candidates and the debate between the vice-presidential candidates; still, if we examine the policy proposals each candidate has made, and also examine the details of policies posted on his Web sites, the differences between the candidates’ approaches on three major homeland security issues – immigration, cybersecurity, and infrastructure – are considerable

  • Sen. Rockefeller asks Fortune 500 CEOs for cybersecurity best practices

    Last month, Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-West Virginia) sent a letter to the CEOs of fortune 500 companies asking them what cybersecurity practices they have adopted, how these practices were adopted, who developed them, and when they were developed; many saw Rockefeller’s letter as an admission that the Obama administration does not have a basis for trying to impose cybersecurity practices on the private sector through the Cybersecurity Act of 2012, now stalled in Congress

  • States may join feds in regulating infrastructure cybersecurity

    Dealing with cybersecurity issues relating to U.S. inmfrastructure has largely been a federal responsibility, carried out through the North American Electric Reliability Corporation Critical Infrastructure Requirements (NERC-CIP)’ the limitations of these requirements have led state regulators to consider increasing state role in infrastructure protection

  • U.S. keeps collecting money for a nuclear waste repository – but has no plans to build one

    Illinois utility customers have paid the U.S government $1.9 billion to store spent nuclear fuel from nuclear plants in the state in a permanent national nuclear waste repository; in the last thirty years, the U.S. government has collected $30 billion from utilities toward this permanent storage, and it keeps collecting $750 million a year; trouble is, in February 2009 the Obama administration decided to “defund” the Yucca Mountain nuclear repository project, and the U.S. government no longer has active plans for a centralized nuclear waste storage facility

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  • Environmentalists concerned about earthquakes tests near California nuclear plant

    The Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) wants to use air guns to emit strong sound waves into a large near-shore area which includes parts of marine reserves; the purpose: creating three dimensional maps of fault zones near its Diablo Canyon nuclear plant in California; the plans have federal and state officials concerned about marine life and public safety

  • The administration set to issue a cybersecurity executive order

    President Obama issued a proclamation the other day making October National Cyber Security Awareness month. The administration’s efforts to push a cybersecurity bill through Congress, however, have so far failed, so the administration is opting for a solution other administrations have adopted in the face of a recalcitrant Congress: executive order

  • Critics: U.S. not doing enough to combat domestic terrorism

    The effectiveness of the U.S. campaign against al Qaeda and its affiliates may have reduced the threat of foreign terrorists launching attacks on targets in the United States, but the threat of terrorism the United States is facing has not been reduced owing to the rise in domestic terrorism

  • New immigration policy separates families, loved ones

    When DHS issued, on 15 June, an executive order which would defer, for two years, deportation proceedings against many illegal immigrants who came to the United States as children, it was a day of celebration for many young immigrants and their families; the order went into effect on 15 August; some illegal immigrants had a cause for celebration, but many do not – because they found out they were not eligible

  • Forensic science in the dock

    Two members of O. J. Simpson’s defense team founded the Innocence Project in 1992; since then, the project has helped exonerate almost 300 innocent people by challenging improper use of DNA testing and other elements of forensic science

  • DHS in settlement talks with employee who charged that ICE was being run “frat style”

    DHS has entered into settlement talks with James Hayes, the head of New York ICE office, following a suit filed by Hayes against DHS secretary Janet Napolitano and ICE; the suit charged two female executives at ICE with turning the agency into a “frat house,” and with discrimination against male employees of the agency

  • Janet Napolitano named in two lawsuits

    DHS secretary Janet Napolitano is under fire for two very different reasons as she is named in two separate lawsuits; the first lawsuit charges that two women executives Napolitano brought to DHS have mistreated male employees at the department; the second suit, brought by several ICE agents, charges that the administration’s deferred deportation executive order, which went into effect 15 August, force the agents face difficult choices while performing their tasks

  • House panel charges DHS overstates deportation figures

    A House committee says the administration inflates the number of illegal aliens it has deported in 2011 and 2012; the committee says the administration is able to cite larger numbers of deportees by including numbers from the Alien Transfer Exit Program (ATEP) in the administration’s year-end removal numbers; if the number of ATEP-removed individuals is subtracted from ICE-deported individuals, then the annualized number of deportees in 2011 and 2012 would lower – rather than higher – than the number of deportees in 2008 and 2009

  • MIT expert: “toxic” political discussions limit climate response

    In a talk at the Sandia National Lab, an MIT expert says the inability of natural and social scientists to convince political leaders that “we’re spinning a roulette wheel over climate change” puts humanity at “extreme risk,” and that the difficulties in using science to push for mitigation strategies are more political than scientific